Cyprus, Israel kick off joint military exercise

NICOSIA, May 29 (Xinhua) -- Cyprus and Israel on Sunday kicked-off their "biggest ever" joint military exercise in the Cypriot air, sea and land territory, a Defense Ministry statement said.

The statement added that the exercise, codenamed "Agapinor 2022", which will be held largely on Cypriot territory, with the participation of "land, air and sea forces from both countries," will be concluded on Thursday.

Defense Ministry sources were quoted by Cypriot media as saying that judging from the military units taking part, the exercise will be the biggest ever so far.

"The maneuver is part of the agreed Bilateral Military Cooperation Program between the two countries and depicts the excellent relations of the two countries in the field of defense and security," the Defense Ministry statement said.

Israeli media said that Israel's Defense Minister Benjamin Gantz will watch part of the exercise, but did not elaborate.

They also said that Israeli special forces units and "many military aircraft" will take part in the exercise.